GM Crops Must Not be Imposed on Scotland After Brexit

By Reporter, The HighLand Times, Tuesday February 13 2018

Tories will oversee race to bottom on food standards.

The UK Government must allow Scotland to continue opposing GM crops cultivation after Brexit, MSP Gail Ross has said.

Following revelations in a Department for Food and Rural Affairs Freedom of Information response that the Tory Government has given only “initial thought” to what will happen to GM regulation in Scotland after Brexit and will not consider this again until after the UK has left the EU, concerns have been raised that the devolved nations may have to lift their ban on the cultivation of GM crops once the UK leaves the EU.

Commercial planting of GM crops is currently banned in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland following decisions by each devolved administration in 2015 to opt out of the EU’s consent for GM crop cultivation.

This comes on top of an admission in a separate FOI that the Department for International Trade is not ruling out importing chlorinated chicken to the UK in any trade deals post-Brexit.

Commenting, Gail Ross MSP, who represents Caithness, Sutherland and Ross said:

“More than nineteen months on from the Brexit vote, it beggar’s belief that Michael Gove’s Department has barely considered the future of GM regulation in the UK following Brexit.

“Highland Council were one of the first in Scotland to campaign for a GM free landscape, and this triumph should not be up for negotiation.

“It should be a no brainer that the Tory Government should maintain the GM opt-out and not impose GM crops on Scotland against our will.

“It is also extremely worrying that the Department for International Trade won’t completely rule out allowing chlorinated chicken, beef and other products to flood the UK’s marketplace after Brexit.

“We cannot see a race to the bottom on food standards after Brexit.

“The UK’s global reputation may be damaged but we want to maintain Scotland’s wholesome, clean, green reputation where, when it comes to food and drink, provenance of product is paramount. 

“Michael Gove campaigned fervently for Brexit but refuses to engage in considering how it will actually work in practice.

“The Tory Government must meaningfully engage with the Scottish Government and ensure that the interests of our £14 billion food and drinks sector is protected and not undermined by the Tories’ reckless decisions.”



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